Saturday, October 20, 2007

On Matriarchy

Update 10/21....I way over did it! I got really obsessive and went nuts. Hope I'm able to enjoy it!! :-P

Family is coming here from Nebraska for a couple of days. For some reason, I find myself in charge of entertainment. We have my dad, his wife, my brother. . .and somehow I, the youngest and, in their opinion, the most challenged mentally, have become the brains behind the event. I realize that I am now the functioning matriarch of the family.

My dad has always called me a control freak. If that's not mirroring, I'm not sure what it is. This bout of lupus has been, actually, a blessing. . .unfortunately, it usually is. I wonder if God is letting this happen to slow me down and get a grip on me. I've slowed down, I'm still working, but more intelligently, and have had the time to sit and sift through stuff and throw things out. That makes me very happy. I've had more time to sit and read, and am enjoying that so much. I've learned more about what makes me tick, and also who I am in Christ. It's been a good lesson time.

Normally, I'd be in a panic about cleaning, cooking, and "putting on a show" because my cousin who is coming is my mom's cousin. Both of these women would make Martha Stewart look lame. I'm not kidding. My mom was June Cleaver with an attitude. However, because of her loving heart, my mom was never judgmental about my housekeeping skills (except as a teen) but then, she never taught me about such things. I wasn't allowed in the kitchen to cook, and my only skill was ironing shirts and sheets. I could win the Shirt and Sheet Iron Woman Olympics hands down. Other than that, I had to learn all about cooking and cleaning after I moved out. So, momma was a bit of a control freak, and dad was the king of control and still remains so, snooping into and advising upon my life and family. Any attempts on my part to take charge at the age of 50 are considered control-freakish. Now that I see that in writing, I see the absurdity.

I like to have a plan, but I'm flexible. I like spontaneity. In fact, if you were to call me up this minute and say you were in town, let's get coffee, I'd would drop everything and run to you. If things don't go my way I don't have a cow. The only thing I get controllish about is my work. It has to be perfect. Other than that, let the chips fall.

So, I made a basic plan for the visit that is flexible and easy. First, I got a little miffed thinking...hey, having a flare here! Help me out! Then, I decided to suck it up and deal. I heard my mom saying, "Just Hollywood up the place!" That was her term for "make it look good and forget the small stuff." As I said, she never judged me because she knew I was a working mom. "When do you have time to do all this??" She would ask, and always offered to take the boys so I could get things done.

My house is a bit cluttered, but it's clean. I hate dirt, and I'm the Queen of Washing. I wash pillow cases, rugs, covers for the sofa and chairs, constantly. I love fresh smelling everything. But that stack of books in the corner makes me happy because it represents possibilities and growth. That art project over there...well, it just tickles me to think about it.

I'm making 3 kinds of lasagna to conform to 3 kinds of diets. The dog will be washed and smelling like a rose, the yard will be (is) gorgeous because I mulched and mummed it up (I love Fall) and I will enjoy the process and be grateful that I am able to do these things for my family. I will also delegate jobs out to people who are fully capable (and whom I HAVE taught well! :-) )

But everytime someone tries to stick that matriarch hat on my head, I swear I'm tossing it into the hedges!


Missy said...

Amen! I'm a-feared of that "title" too. Fortunately I have 2 sisters I can pass the hat to. It's simply a matter of artful dodging. :)

I can't imagine anything more wonderful than sitting to visit with you - regardless of the surroundings (even though they sounds wonderful, too). The time together will be a blessing to all of you. Enjoy!

karen said...

Missy, our lunch together. . .time I will always treasure!

Kansas Bob said...

3 kinds of lasagna ??

Blessings on their visit Karen.. you are certainly loving them well.

Robert said...

hey karen-

wow 3 types of lasagna mangia mangia hehe sounds like you are wellprepared for this visit friend lupus or no you sure are skilled at sharing the innerworkings of your mind and how the family dynamics come into play hope it is a very enjoyable and good time for all of you karen salud!!

Missy said...

(re: 10/21 update)
I thought you might do that. :)

Remember I did that thing with the "sparkling" shower? If I can come back 'round - I know you can do even better! Still praying for ya, Sis.

karen said...

yeah, regular, one wheat and tomato free (a white lasagna?) and one just wheat free.
thanks, KB and Roberto!

Heh heh, missy!! thanks...prayers appreciated!

Don R said...

Sounds like appropriate planning. Looking forward to the coming weekend! Get some rest before then!.

Milly said...

The women in my family are thought of as being a bit of a matriarch clan. I’ve been to a village where the women were and I have to tell you they did almost all of the work. No it wasn’t like Wicker Man. I asked my guide what the men did. He smiled and told me they were happy. I don’t want to be a matriarch either.

Enjoy the time together. Let other take care of you once in a while. That’s what the ladies in my family do. Us younger ones do the cooking and fetching now.